Student Spotlight: Ina Ajazi, GHD ’20

Ina Ajazi is a GHD student in the class of 2020. Read more about her professional accomplishments in her biography.

What valuable insights have you gained from the GHD program so far?

“At GHD, I realized quickly it does not matter how long you have worked in development, you always have something to learn. The classes we are taking give such a different perspective on the work we do and how challenging the field of development is. From the historical implications to the theories and variables affecting economic growth, there are always new circumstances to consider in development”

What professional experiences led you to the GHD program?

“As a young professional, I came into the development field out of luck and inevitable passion. From Peace Corps Armenia to Lions Clubs International in Chicago, I have had the privilege of growing to understand that in order to embark on the goal of global human development, I first need to develop myself. That is why I decided to join the GHD program. Besides the incredibly knowledgeable cohort and faculty, I get the opportunity to tailor my education with courses that interest me and specifically address the concerns of my previous professional trajectory — such as the importance of data collection, analysis, and project evaluations.”

What is one of your most significant professional accomplishments thus far?

“While in Peace Corps-Armenia, I help facilitate Women’s Empowerment groups for the women in my surrounding community through my site mate and counterpart’s Let Girls Learn grant. These groups provided a safe space for women to talk about the challenges they have in their community. They were able to discuss how the challenging social and gender norms of being a housewife and a woman affect them. They participated in discussions and trainings to improve their professional skills, challenge these norms proactively, and have more active participation in the community.

What is your favorite place abroad and why?

“Easily Albania, I was born there and it always is one of my favorite trips going back to visit. There is a complete paradox between the new developments, poverty, and even my own presence there that I see when I go to visit my family.”

Ina in Armenia in 2016